Book Review: Goodbye Days by Jeff Zentner

516-WZ4BhsL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_Title: Goodbye Days
Author:  Jeff Zentner
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Published date: 7th March 2017
Published by: Crown Books for Young Readers
Rating: 5 / 5 stars
Summary:

What if you could spend one last day with someone you lost?

One day Carver Briggs had it all—three best friends, a supportive family, and a reputation as a talented writer at his high school, Nashville Academy for the Arts.

The next day he lost it all when he sent a simple text to his friend Mars, right before Mars, Eli, and Blake were killed in a car crash.

Now Carver can’t stop blaming himself for the accident, and he’s not the only one. Eli’s twin sister is trying to freeze him out of school with her death-ray stare. And Mars’s father, a powerful judge, is pressuring the district attorney to open a criminal investigation into Carver’s actions.

Luckily, Carver has some unexpected allies: Eli’s girlfriend, the only person to stand by him at school; Dr. Mendez, his new therapist; and Blake’s grandmother, who asks Carver to spend a Goodbye Day with her to share their memories and say a proper goodbye to his friend.

Soon the other families are asking for a Goodbye Day with Carver, but he’s unsure of their motives. Will they all be able to make peace with their losses, or will these Goodbye Days bring Carver one step closer to a complete breakdown or—even worse—prison?


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Every time there was an accident caused by texting while driving and someone died, people immediately tend to blame the person driving. But they rarely talk about the person sending the text. Goodbye Days explored that—Mars’ dad, and Adair blaming Carver because he sent the text that led to his three best friends’ death, as well as the guilt felt by Carver for sending that text message.

It always makes me sad reading about children, teens and young adults who lost their life too soon, before they get to grow up and live their life the fullest. before they could realize their dreams and do great things. It also makes me sad when the what-ifs game was played, like when Carver made up the stories where he didn’t send the text message. But I love torturing myself and breaking my heart when I read, which is why I love this book so much.

“I imagine what Eli saw in the split second before the trailer of that truck grew in his field of vision until it was all he saw.” — Pierce Bauer

This is a quote from Eli’s dad, when he and his wife were having their goodbye day for Eli with Carver and Jesmyn. I think this sentence is the reason why I’m so fascinated with stories with tragedies. I like to imagine what they feel that split second, knowing that they were going to die. I did that with this book too, playing that what-ifs game in their point of view instead of Carver’s.

I think what I love the most about this book is the goodbye days, when they get to know pieces of Blake, Eli and Mars that they didn’t know before. I enjoyed the flashbacks Carver had about the “Sauce Crew” as well as the imagined scenes he came up with sometimes. The friendship that Carver had with Blake, Eli, and Mars was so beautiful, it made me choke up and wish I get to have that kind of friendship. I also love the moments with Dr. Mendez, and Carver’s journey to get through that tragedy, to forgive himself and ease his guilt. At least, that’s what I’d like to think about the final chapter.

To sum it up, I love this book a lot and I think it was a masterpiece. It has everything I love, and made me cry and have this melancholic feeling from page one till the end. Even though the book didn’t really focus on diversity, I like the fact that it has diverse characters; Jesmyn was a Filipino adopted by American family, Mars was a POC, and Blake was gay. And one major thing I like is that Jesmyn and Carver didn’t end up together. It always turned me off when that happens, especially if the girl was the girlfriend of one of the people that died. I might have to take away one star if that happened. I would recommend this book to fans of History is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera, and I’ll Give You the Sun, and The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson, based on the melancholic vibe the books gave me, and how much it made me cry.

I rate the book 5 out of 5 stars.


So, have you ever read Goodbye Days by Jeff Zentner before? What are your thoughts on the book? Do you like tragedies, and thinking about things like “What if the person did things differently?” and imagine different scenarios before crying because the characters are still dead in the end?

I’d love to know your thoughts.

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Someone Else’s Summer by Rachel Bateman Book Review

30285632Title: Someone Else’s Summer
Author: Rachel Bateman
Published date: 9th May 2017
Published by: Running Press Kids
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 4 / 5 stars

Summary:

Anna’s always idolized her older sister, Storm. So when Storm dies in a tragic car accident on the night of her high school graduation, Anna is completely lost and her family is torn apart. That is, until she finds Storm’s summer bucket list and decides to honor her sister by having the best summer ever—which includes taking an epic road trip to the coast from her sleepy Iowa town. Setting out to do everything on Storm’s list along with her sisters best friend Cameron—the boy next door—who knew that Storm’s dream summer would eventually lead to Anna’s own self-discovery?

Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for giving me the opportunity to read and review this book.

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Book Review: I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

51MBmjWq-AL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_Title: I’ll Give You the Sun
Author: Jandy Nelson
Publisher: Walker Books
Published date: 2nd April 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance, LGBT, Realistic Fiction
Date read: 4th May 2017
Rating: 5 / 5
Summary:

A brilliant, luminous story of first love, family, loss, and betrayal for fans of John Green, David Levithan, and Rainbow Rowell

Jude and her twin brother, Noah, are incredibly close. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and dramatic ways . . until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as someone else—an even more unpredictable new force in her life. The early years are Noah’s story to tell. The later years are Jude’s. What the twins don’t realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world.

This radiant novel from the acclaimed, award-winning author of The Sky Is Everywhere will leave you breathless and teary and laughing—often all at once.

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Book Review: …And A Happy New Year? by Holly Bourne

9781474927222

Title: …And A Happy New Year? (The Spinster Club #3.5)
Author: Holly Bourne
Publisher: Usborne Publishing Ltd
Date Published: 1st November 2016
Date read: 10th December 2016
Genre: YA, Contemporary
Edition: Hardback
Source: Own copy
Rating: 5 / 5 stars
Summary:

Evie, Amber and Lottie are having a new year party to remember.

For the first time since leaving college, all three girls are back together. It’s time for fun and flirting, snogs and shots.

(And not tears or tantrums or terrible secrets)

Because everything’s going great for these girls – Spinster Club for ever! Right?


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…And A Happy New Year? is a giant ball of hurt disguised in a pretty cover, and sweet and cute moment between Kyle and Amber at the beginning of the book.

But of course, it is totally worth it.

…And A Happy New Year? is a novella about Amber, Evie and Lottie after the first term of university. When I saw this book on the bookshelf of my local bookstore — and it was a hardback version, and so very pretty — I didn’t bother reading the summary and went straight to the first chapter. I only read two pages, but I was already so excited because it was a scene between Amber and Kyle and they are so cute. So I bought it immediately. With such a cute start, I thought it would be such a happy story, with all three of them back together, kickass members of the Spinster Club.

If I had bothered reading the summary, or even read a few pages more before buying, I would’ve know how wrong I was.

I bet everyone who had gone off to university has experience this themselves; the feeling of drifting apart from your high school / college best friends when you went your separate way when you started university. I should have known better before reading this book, but somehow, because to me their friendship is so strong, I just assumed that they will still stay the same way despite everything. Because it was the three of them, and I wanted to believe that things like being apart because they don’t attend the same university won’t change their friendship.

This is a normal thing that happens to some people when you start that new chapter in your life: university, when you transitioned from a young adult to a new adult. But it didn’t make it any less sad. And because it happened to Amber, Lottie and Evie —after everything that they went through together in the previous three books— it was even more sad. I cried a lot reading this book, especially since it was so relatable. I felt like I could relate to all three of them, about how they felt; the feeling of being left behind, the feeling of being left out or not liked, the feeling that people didn’t want you around, and the feeling of wanting to go away but not wanting to leave your past behind.

I’ve only talked about how sad it was, but there was also cute moments in the book. I seriously love Kyle, and Oli. Seriously, I do. They are sweethearts. I would say more, but I feel like I would be spoiling everyone. (Although I probably already did with the bits that I’ve wrote).

To sum it up, don’t be fooled by the cover. It was so pretty and cheerful, and the title… You would’ve thought it would be happy and with light feelings, not heavy and sad. But it is totally worth your time, buying and reading this book. I am very sad that this is the end of this series, because I really love the girls so much, and all the other characters. I recommend this book to all YA Contemporary lovers, and those who wants to read a book that would give you a dose of reality about moving on to the next point in life called University.

I rate this book 5 / 5 stars.